A Fistful of Comics: Crowdfunding Roundup, October ’18

A Fistful of Comics: Crowdfunding Roundup, October ’18
The month of ghosts, ghouls, and gourds is upon us, and all our favorite crowdfunding sites have seasonal comics gifts for us. Read on for the best!

It’s Halloween! We made it! The month of ghosts, ghouls, and gourds is upon us, and boy is it welcome. After an utterly grueling few weeks in both comics and the “real world,” it’s time to cozy down with some brand new campaigns full of spooky stories, inspirational worlds, and at least one robot (probably).

It’s Halloween! We made it! The month of ghosts, ghouls, and gourds is upon us, and boy is it welcome. After an utterly grueling few weeks in both comics and the “real world,” it’s time to cozy down with some brand new campaigns full of spooky stories, inspirational worlds, and at least one robot (probably).

Three panels from Hungry Ghost. Carey, a tall woman with straight hair tied up in a bun, wears a scarf and carries a paper coffee cup. Alanna, a shorter girl with tight braids, walks beside her, also holding a coffee cup. Alanna asks Carey why she only ever orders the same thing; Carey replies that she freezes and goes on autopilot every time she tries to order. Both girls are dressed for fall weather. Hungry Ghost, Alison Blackwell, 2018

Hungry Ghost: Book One

Alison Blackwell
Ends October 11

Note: The Kickstarter page and summary for Hungry Ghost include discussion of disordered eating.

Hungry Ghost takes place in Providence, Rhode Island, the author’s hometown and a character unto itself in the book. The story stars Carey, a college student who struggles with anxiety and anorexia, and Alanna, a young violinist struggling her way through middle school. Hungry Ghost is also a haunting psychological thriller, complete with a serial killer and a host of the protagonist’s personal demons. Book one, which is currently being published online as a webcomic, will be 72 pages long with a planned delivery in April of 2019.

A strip depicting bust shots of four characters. Front and center is Tamsin Trakroo, a girl with light brown skin, wavy black hair, and pink glasses. To her left stands a white, blond-haired boy with a rocket strapped to his back; to her left stand a white girl with brown hair and a pink jacket and a black girl with curly hair who's wearing a red bandanna and overalls. Science!; Taylor Esposito (letterer), Jason Inman & Ashley Victoria Robinson (writers), Becca Kinzie (colorist), Dez Pittman (artist); Bedside Press; 2018

Science!

Taylor Esposito, Jason Inman, Becca Kinzie, Dez Pittman, Ashley Victoria Robinson
Bedside Press
Ends October 12

This is where that robot is! Science! is an 80-page, all-ages graphic about supergenius kids, holographic dads, and academic intrigue. And we all know what happens when a bunch of really smart kids end up under the same roof: chaos. Chaos happens. Follow along as fourteen-year-old Tamsin Kuhn Trakroo has to choose between crush and conscience, and between her dad’s holographic ghost and the real, live school that’s all around her. Nothing could possibly go wrong.

Two pages from a comic entitled "As for Ashley." The comic is extremely text heavy with colorful artwork, depicting the creator's relationship with and experience of gender growing up. "As for Ashley" written and drawn by Marshall Delbecq, with colors by Andrea Boyles, included as part of Queens, Jean Munson, Plot Twist Publishing, 2018.

Queens: A Feminist Anthology

Jean Munson
Plot Twist Publishing
Ends October 12

Queens is a community-based feminist anthology out of Nevada, edited by Jean Munson. The book is slim—44 pages long—and aims to be an intensely relatable primer on a lot of issues that are glossed over in primary and secondary school classrooms, including microaggressions and gender nonconformity. Though the book is small, the team appears genuinely committed to inclusivity: the Kickstarter page appears in both English and Spanish (though the book will be published in English), and the previews delve into trans issues, as well as the expected roster of catcalling and double standards.

Two pages from Bang! Bang! BOOM!, in which a man with strange red markings on his face enters a fancy house and just wrecks the men with guns on the inside. Bang! Bang! BOOM! Volume 1, Melanie Schoen & Del Borovic, 2019.

Bang! Bang! BOOM! Volume 1 & Novel

Melanie Schoen & Del Borovic
Ends October 13

Bang! Bang! BOOM! is an ongoing webcomic set in the magical 1920s, where the US, in addition to its fraught relationship with alcohol and morality, has also gotten its hands on some weird future technology. And, of course, by “the US” I mean corporations … and ostensibly, the mob. The webcomic follows two gangsters as they run both away from and towards trouble, committing crimes and sometimes kissing; the novel details their meeting in New York City, ten years before the comic begins. The graphic novel will be 204 pages long, black and white with color accents, and the novel is a full 95,000 words long. This campaign is meant to print both!

The cover to Imaginary #1. Tracy sits atop a large (friendly) bipedal beast, standing next to an armored imaginary friend. They face away from the camera, looking into the distance where a dragon is wrapped around a tall building. The title lettering arcs over the dragon's head at the top of the page. Imaginary #1, Damien C. Benton (writer), Lee Milewski (colorist), Esther Pimentel (artist), 2018. Cover by Esther Pimentel.

Imaginary #1

Damien C. Benton, Lee Milewsk, Esther Pimentel
Ends October 14

Imaginary follows the story of a young boy, Tracy, as he imagines his way in and out of trouble in the post-singularity magical world (think Harold and the Purple Crayon, without the crayon and with a lot more Final Fantasy). See, Tracy can warp reality, and in a moment of serious stress, brought the world in his mind to life—wizards, elves, cool cat men with swords, and a whole lot of imaginary friends. Now, he and his crew have to go on a journey. Imaginary #1 will be standard comic format, full color, and 24 pages long, with a whole bucket of variant covers to choose from.

The cover art for Called Into Being. A detailed black and white rendering of a man with a close-shaved hair and stitching down his chest and arms reaching out to touch his reflection in an ornate mirror. Of to the side, in the other hand, he holds a copy of Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. Called Into Being, Allison O'Toole & Megan Purdy (editors), 2018. Cover art by Richard Pace.

Called Into Being: A Celebration of Frankenstein

Allison O’Toole & Megan Purdy
Ends October 18

Disclaimer: this final anthology features current and former WWAC contributors and editors, including co-founder Megan Purdy and current reviews editor Kayleigh Hearn.

WWAC’s own dearly departed editor-in-chief and co-founder Megan Purdy is one half of the editorial team on a brand new zine about one of the biggest monsters of them all: Frankenstein. Frankenstein is pretty dead, but (despite how I phrased that first sentence) Megan is not, and the idea of Frankenstein’s monster is not, and this new project unites those facts to form a celebration of Mary Shelley’s most enduring creation. With over 100 pages of essays, illustrations, and comics about the impact Shelley’s landmark novel has had on the zine’s creators, Called Into Being is a fitting campaign for this most holy of holiday seasons.

A computer-generated mockup of the cover and spine of I WILL LIVE FOREVER. The cover is layered and colorful, built of multiple layers of die-cut stock. The top layer is images of flowers; from the middle of the field of flowers, a skull sinks deeper into the die-cut layers. "I WILL LIVE FOREVER" is printed in white letters across the skull's forehead. I WILL LIVE FOREVER, Maëlle Doliveux, Beehive Books, 2020

I WILL LIVE FOREVER: Papercraft Comics by Maëlle Doliveux

Maëlle Doliveux
Beehive Books
Ends October 23

I WILL LIVE FOREVER is a collection of six short stories, all told through intricate, gorgeous papercut artwork. While the interior pages will be printed (with originals for sale as part of the campaign!) the cover will be die cut in multiple layers, recreating the three-dimensional, textural experience of papercut artwork. The book will also be bound with Coptic binding, showing the stitching that holds everything together to create a gorgeous object as well as an exciting set of stories. Backers can also get smaller papercraft pieces through the campaign, mounted in shadow boxes and shipped with the book. Note, though, that the artwork is not yet completed: because papercraft artwork is so labor intensive, the ship date for this project is October of 2020.

A strip of six panels from the comics in Hana Doki Kira Volume 2, with an icon symbolizing the book in the middle. The book is bright pink, with three gold symbols: a flower, a heart, and a diamond with curved sides, stacked vertically in the middle of the cover. Hana Doki Kira, Enduro, HKezza, Elisa Lau, Annie Stoll (editors), Year 85 Group, 2019

Hana Doki Kira Volume 2

Enduro, HKezza, Elisa Lau, Annie Stoll
Year 85 Group
Ends October 24

The second of Year 85 Group’s anthologies celebrating and exploring Shojo manga’s influence on its featured creators, Hana Doki Kira volume 2 showcases the work of 26 creators, including stories that span the scope of LGBTQIA+ experience. The books will be 6”x10”, over 150 pages, and mostly black and white … except for hot pastel pink spot color. Backers can also get extremely thematically appropriate rewards, including hot pink washi tape, pink stationery, and a dope hot pink embossed bomber jacket.

A page from Year in Hereafter. The first panel, a top-down view of a family sitting on couches, takes up 60% of the page; the rest is shots of the characters talking to each other about farm comings-and-goings. The colors are warm and cozy. Year in Hereafter, Mikael Hankonen, 2018.

Year in Hereafter

Mikael Hankonen
Ends October 31

Year in Hereafter is a story about a student, a farm, and a whole lot of magic. Starting out on a rural farm where the line between magic and reality is blurred—if it’s there at all—the story is a modern retelling and reinterpretation of Finland’s biggest national epic: Kalevala. Year in Hereafter has actually been printed before, in small, 40-page chunks, but this will be the first time the story thus far is bound in a single, easy to read, full-color volume. That said, you can also read the whole webcomic right this second!

A digital mockup of the Electrum book alongside book specs. One of the books leans against a stack of five more, showing off the cover and spine. The cover depicts a person with white hair and a maroon cape riding a pegasus into a golden sky. The text reads: - 272 pages; - 26 brand-new comic stories; - b/w interior art, upgradeable to 2-tone colors; - upgradable softcover." Electrum, Der-Shing Helmer & Kiku Hughes (editors), 2019. Cover art by Yoshi Yoshitani.

Electrum: A Mixed-Race Comic Anthology

Der-Shing Helmer & Kiku Hughes
Ends November 3

Electrum is an all-ages comic anthology created by and primarily for mixed-race folks, and I’ve been practically vibrating with excitement for it ever since Der-Shing Helmer announced it about a year ago. The volume is the first in a new series of anthologies called Alloy, which are designed to showcase characters and creators of intersecting identities in ways that are accessible and relatable to younger readers. Electrum is everything I want from comics: brilliant creators (including Sloane Leong, Tess Stone, and Iasmin Omar Ata), stories for kids, and a mission based in inclusivity and representation.

A high contrast, black and white image. In the foreground, a girl with white skin and stark black hair runs towards the camera. Behind her, a black dog with white pinprick eyes is in pursuit. The inks fray and blot at the edges, and the image is frightening and surreal. Barking, Lucy Sullivan, 2019.

Barking

Lucy Sullivan
Unbound
Funding until complete

Note: Barking includes discussion and depiction of suicidal thoughts and actions, as well as depictions of institutionalized mental health care. Just skip this one if that’s not something you want to see!

Barking is the story of a girl dealing with too much, too quickly. The story isn’t autobiographical, but is deeply inspired by Lucy Sullivan’s own standoff with mental illness and personal crisis. It follows Alix as she’s chased by the wispy figments of her own demons, sectioned, and placed in inpatient care. Sullivan’s illustrations are haunting, warped and blotted at the edges, and capture the feeling of how things look through the haze of anxiety and frayed nerves in a way that means I can’t ever look at them for too long at once. Barking is over 100 pages long, and will be published in a black-and-white hardback as soon as the Unbound campaign has collected enough preorders.

Zora Gilbert
COPY_EDITOR
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